Who Drank Wine In The Bible
Who drank wine in the Bible? Almost everyone. Drinking wine was normative for all Jews, , though the Levitical priests in service at the temple , the Nazirites , and the Rechabites abstained from wine. In the New Testament John The Baptist also abstained.
Despite what some today claim, Jesus himself drank wine , and was charged with drinking too much by his accusers.
For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, He has a demon. The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners! Yet wisdom is justified by her deeds.
Jesus Chose Wine To Represent His Blood
During Jesus last Passover meal, several cups of wine were shared among the disciples . Right after the meal, Jesus picked up a cup of wine, gave a word of thanks to His Father, and then said, Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Fathers kingdom . Paul called this cup of wine the cup of blessing and the cup of the Lord .
And of all the things Jesus chose to represent his blood to us, he used wine.
Wine In The Bible: A Biblical Study On The Use Of Alcoholic Beverages
Chapter 5JESUS AND WINESamuele Bacchiocchi, Ph. D., Andrews University
Many well-meaning Christians find the fundamental justification for their moderate drinking of alcoholic beverages in the teachings and example of Jesus. For example, in his book The Christian and Alcoholic Beverages, Kenneth L. Gentry appeals first of all to Christs example to defend a moderate partaking of alcoholic beverages: “First, we must again be reminded that the Lord and his apostles partook of wine despite the fact that sinful men indulged in it to their own hurt and degradation.”1
It is alleged that Christ not only partook of fermented wine but also produced it in abundant quantity at the wedding of Cana and gave it to His disciples at the Last Supper. Norman L. Geisler, for example, explicitly states in his article “A Christian Perspective on Wine-Drinking” that “it is false to say that Jesus made unfermented wine. As a matter of fact, He made wine that tasted so good the people at the wedding feast in Cana said it was better than the wine they had just drunk. Surely they would not have said this if it had tasted flat to them. In fact in John 2:9-10 it is called wine and good wine . These are the same words used for fermented wine elsewhere in the New Testament.”2
The chapter is divided into the following five wine-related stories or sayings:
PART I: THE WEDDING AT CANA
PART II: NEW WINE IN NEW WINESKINS
PART III: IS OLD WINE IS BETTER?
WAS JESUS A GLUTTON AND A DRUNKARD?
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Wine In The Old Testament
Wine symbolized life and vitality. It was also a sign of joy, blessing, and prosperity in the Old Testament . Called strong drink thirteen times in the Old Testament, wine was a potent alcoholic beverage and aphrodisiac. Other names for wine in the Bible are the blood of grapes wine of Hebron new wine aged wine spiced wine and pomegranate wine .
Throughout the Old Testament, partaking of wine was associated with happiness and celebration . The Israelites were commanded to make drink offerings of wine and tithes of wine .
Wine featured prominently in several Old Testament stories. In Genesis 9:1827, Noah planted a vineyard after leaving the ark with his family. He became drunk on wine and lay uncovered in his tent. Noahs son Ham saw him naked and disrespected his father to his brothers. When Noah found out, he cursed Ham and his descendants. This occasion was the first incident in the Bible showing the devastation that drunkenness can cause to oneself and ones family.
In Proverbs 20:1, wine is personified: Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise . Those who love pleasure become poor those who love wine and luxury will never be rich, informs Proverbs 21:17 .
Even though wine was Gods gift to bless His people with joy, its misuse led them to abandon the Lord to worship idols . Gods wrath is also pictured as a cup of wine poured out in judgment .
Abundant Wine Is One Of The Blessings Of The Age To Come
On the day God swallows up death forever and wipes away every tear, the Lord will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine, of rich food full of marrow, or aged wine will refined . On that day God will again be God to all the clans of Israel, He will restore their fortunes, they shall plant vineyards and drink their wine , they shall be radiant over the goodness of the Lord, over the grain, the wine, and the oil . God promises to restore to Israel the years that the swarming locust has eaten: the threshing floors will be full of grain and the vats shall overflow with wine and oil .
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Alcoholic Content Of Wine In The Bible
There is no shortage of materials available trying to answer the question about the alcoholic content of wine in the Bible. Some take the position that anytime wine is praised in the Scriptures, it must be talking about the non-alcoholic variety . I take serious issue with this for several reasons, but space doesnt permit me to go into it here.
I refer my readers to the fine paper written by Kenneth Gentry, Jr., The Bible and the Question of Alcoholic Beverages , published in Criswell Theological Review in the Spring of 2008. In this article he sets out to prove, among other things, that the wine in the Bible was a fermented quality, alcoholic-content, potentially inebriating beverage.
Pop A Cork For The Kingdom
Yes, there are some Biblical Reasons We Should Appreciate Wine
Bottom line: if you dont like wine, dont drink wine.
If you enjoy wine, enjoy it to the glory of Godresponsibly and with great joy.
If you dont drink wineand there are many reasons to abstain from itdo so with the attitude that wine is a blessing from which you are abstaining.
If you drink wine, remember wine is a celebratory drink, and as Christians we have every reason to celebrate.
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Biblical Reasons We Should Appreciate Wine
Lets discuss some Biblical Reasons We Should Appreciate Wine.
If you know me well, you know I make my own beer and wine. If you know me really well, you know I really enjoy an ice-cold mug of IPA or a nice glass of Malbec.
I firmly believe wine is a good gift from God and that, while living on earth, His own Son enjoyed it.
On more than one occasion Ive been asked how I could possibly defend my enjoyment of alcohol being a Christian. Is wine in the Bible portrayed in a positive way? Yes. It is.
I also understand there are some who believe differently than me in this matter. It is not my point here to quarrel over opinions . Food and drink are not central matters when it comes to gospel-living. As Paul said, The kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit .
My only point here is to share with you some of what Ive learned from Gods Word that has informed my opinions about alcohol. Why do I think it is biblical to appreciate wine? What are some Biblical Reasons We Should Appreciate Wine?
Is There Wine In The Bible
- General Biblical Studies, Interdenominational Christian Training Center
Wine plays a significant role in the Bible, with more than 140 references to this delicious fruit of the vine. From the days of Noah in Genesis to the time of Solomon and on through the New Testament to the book of Revelation , wine appears in the biblical text.
A standard drink in the ancient world, wine was one of Gods special blessings to bring joy to His peoples hearts . Yet the Bible makes it clear that overindulgence and abuse of wine are dangerous practices that can ruin ones life .
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Wine In The New Testament
In the New Testament, wine was stored in flasks made from animal skins. Jesus applied the concept of old and new wineskins to illustrate the difference between the old and new covenants .
When wine ferments, it produces gasses that stretch the wineskins. New leather can expand, but older leather loses its flexibility. New wine in old wineskins would crack the leather, causing the wine to spill out. The truth of Jesus as Savior could not be contained within the former confines of self-righteous, pharisaical religion. The old, dead way was too dried up and unresponsive to carry the fresh message of salvation in Jesus Christ to the world. God would use His church to accomplish the goal.
In Jesus life, wine served to demonstrate His glory, as seen in Christs first miracle of turning water into wine at the wedding in Cana . This miracle also signaled that Israels Messiah would bring joy and blessing to His people.
According to some Bible scholars, the wine of the New Testament was diluted with water, which may have been accurate in specific uses. But wine had to have been strong enough to intoxicate for the apostle Paul to warn, Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit .
Find The Abundant Life
Jesus said, I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly . By using alcohol we participate in destroying not only our own life, but often the lives of others. Even in moderation, alcohol use causes significant problemsphysically, mentally, and spiritually. Its no wonder the Bible consistently warns against it. God says, in Isaiah 1:18, “Come now and let us reason together.” With alcohol use we temporarily and permanently stupefy our reasoning powers. So, for a Christian, is it drinkable, or unthinkable?
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Jesus Banqueted With Wine To Demonstrate The Joy Of The Nearness Of The Kingdom Of God
One of the marks of Jesus ministry was table fellowship. Jesus is often found eating in others homes or hosting meals. These instances of table fellowship left a deep mark on those who observed them or participated in them. These were not merely times to share food, but were platforms for Jesus to challenge social norms and make profound theological statements about himself and the kingdom of God.
What were these moments of table fellowship like? The Gospel of Luke offers us many glimpses. These were far from casual meals. Repentant sinners impacted by Jesus message would hold great feasts, and together Jesus and his disciples would recline with tax collectors and other notorious individuals . Jesus would even host his own banquets . These joyful feasts were settings where Jesus would call sinners to repentance , where men publicly turned from sin , and where Jesus spoke of the joy of the angels when even one sinner repents . The meals might even be interrupted with sobering moments of remorseful weeping as Jesus declared sinners forgiven . Some were miraculously healed . During these times, eager listeners would sit at His feet to hear His words . He would rebuke hypocrisy and empty religion , teach about genuine humility and honor , and challenged the social norms that divided rich and poor .
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Alcohol is a controversial topic in modern society. On the one hand, the drinking of alcohol leads to debauchery, drunk diving, redness of eyes, and sexually immoral activities.
On the other hand, alcohol consumption can be pretty innocent and even Biblical . Even Jesus Christ himself drank wine on occasions.
The effects of alcohol depend on a man’s heart. What are the underlying intentions of drinking alcoholic beverages? Are you drinking sweet wine in honor of Jesus? Or are you planning to indulge in drunkenness orgies and beyond?
In today’s bible study, we have read the Bible and selected the most relevant verses on God’s alcohol stance.
Things Bible Says About Drinking
Below are scriptures that discuss drinking and the dangers of alcohol abuse.
1. Numbers 6:3
He shall abstain from wine and strong drink he shall drink no vinegar, whether made from wine or strong drink nor shall he drink any grape juice nor eat fresh or dried grapes.
2. 1 Corinthians 6:910
Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
3. 1 Timothy 5:23
No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments.
4. Ephesians 5:6
Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.
5. Luke 21:34
Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap.
6. Ecclesiastes 9:7
Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart, for God has already approved what you do.
7. Isaiah 5:22
Woe to those who are heroes in drinking wine And valiant men in mixing strong drink.
8. Galatians 5:1921
9. Proverbs 20:1
10. Romans 14:21
Reading The Bible As Having No Positive References To Alcohol
There are some who interpret certain passages in the Bible as not referring to alcohol, arguing that all positive references to “wine” in Scripture refer to non-alcoholic beverages and all negative references speak of alcoholic beverages. Advocates of this view, called the “two-wine” position, argue that the Greek and Hebrew words rendered “wine” in most English versions are generic terms for fruit juices context determines if the beverage in view is alcoholic or not. The fact is pointed out that even in earlier stages of the English language, such as in 1611 when the King James Version was translated, “wine” could refer to non-alcoholic beverages as well as alcoholic ones. The two-wine view is widespread in conservative Evangelicalism. Dr. Robert Teachout, a fundamental Baptist seminary professor, argued for this position in his doctoral dissertation The Use of “Wine” in the Old Testament. Separatist Baptist support for a biblical total abstinence position is widespread. Other sources for this view include the Purified Translation of the Bible, where extensive footnotes are used to promote the idea, and the 19th century Temperance Bible Commentary.
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Bible Verses About Drinking Wine
There is nothing wrong with drinking alcohol. Always remember that Jesus even turned water into wine and wine in Scripture was and is still used today for health benefits. I always recommend staying away from alcohol so you dont cause anyone to stumble or cause yourself to sin.
Drunkenness is a sin and living in this type of lifestyle will cause many to be denied Heaven. Drinking wine in moderation is not a problem, but many people try to make up their own definition of moderation.
Once again I advise Christians to stay away from alcohol just to be on the safe side, but if you do plan to drink than be responsible.
What does the Bible say?
1. Psalm 104:14-15 He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for people to cultivate bringing forth food from the earth: wine that gladdens human hearts, oil to make their faces shine, and bread that sustains their hearts.
2. Ecclesiastes 9:7 Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink your wine with a joyful heart, for God has already approved what you do.
3. 1 Timothy 5:23 Stop drinking only water, and use a little wine because of your stomach and your frequent illnesses.
Cause no one to stumble.
4. Romans 14:21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall.
5. 1 Corinthians 8:9 Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak.
Drunkards will not make it into Heaven.
Glory of God
Was Wine In The Bible Cut With Water
According to F. S. Fitzsimmonds in his article, Wine and Strong Drink, in the New Bible Dictionary, the answer is “no”. At least, not in the Old Testament. In the New Testament wine was probably cut with 2 parts water to 1 part wine. Some who oppose the use of wine as a beverage argue that the wine in Scripture was so diluted that it was difficult to become drunk. Scripture itself shows that this is not the case. It appears that the wine in the New Testament, if cut, would have the same alcoholic content as today’s beer.
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